Pirlo demands more desire

16 May 2021 20:18:46 GMTPlus10

Juventus coach Andrea Pirlo says his players showed their big-game mentality in Saturday's crucial 3-2 victory over Serie A champions Inter.

Juve are 1.50 to finish in the top four and qualify for next season's Champions League but Pirlo believes that a lack of ruthlessness against the weaker teams in Italy's top flight cost them a chance of claiming a tenth consecutive Scudetto.

The former Italy midfielder is in his first season as a manager and there has been speculation that he may not retain his job next term.

However, Saturday's dramatic win in Turin could have boosted his chances of staying in the position as Juventus inflicted Inter's first league defeat since 6th January and only their third of the season.

Serie A's top scorer Cristiano Ronaldo gave Juve the lead but the prolific Romelu Lukaku equalised from the penalty spot for Inter.

Juan Cuadrado put the hosts 2-1 up just before half-time but they were reduced to ten men early in the second half and Inter drew level thanks to an own goal from veteran Giorgio Chiellini.

However, Cuadrado converted an 88th-minute penalty to seal victory for Juventus.

The win takes the Old Lady into third place above Milan and Napoli, who both play on Sunday, and Pirlo's men finish their league campaign away to Bologna next weekend.

"We should have had the same determination and desire to fight on every ball also in the other games of the season," Pirlo told Sky Sport Italia.

"If we had done so, we would not be fighting for a top-four finish at this point. We made too many mistakes in games that seemed easy on paper. The lads have proved they are up to the task in big games. This is a good team, we have room for improvement."

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